While the purpose of this report is to highlight some 2019 examples of the human spirit at work at University Health through the compassion, leadership, innovation and resilience of our staff and our patients, COVID-19 has changed a great deal in our world.
There is much still be learned about this virus, including when an effective vaccine will be available, or what its ultimate impact will be on our community, state, nation and world. What we can tell you is that the traits we proudly celebrate in this report are on full display across University Health in 2020 as we continue to adapt and innovate to serve with great skill and compassion, and help lead in the worldwide search for new and better treatment options.
Here are just a few highlights of our COVID-19 response to date:
• Preparations started in January when our Infectious Disease Response Group mobilized and we secured additional PPE.
• Supported coordination for U.S. evacuees from Wuhan and quarantined cruise ship passengers.
• Implemented measures to enhance safety – screenings, sanitizing, physical distancing.
• Stood up the first drive-thru COVID-19 testing for health care workers.
• Transitioned medical/surgical units into COVID-19 care units. Delayed elective procedures.
• Addressed shortages in local testing capacity.
• The pharmacy team sourced the raw materials and manufactured viral transport media.
• Pathology department, in collaboration with UT Health San Antonio, developed a CDC approved COVID-19 test.
• Held multiple blood drives to ensure adequate supplies during the lock-down.
• A tent was erected outside the ER and drills conducted to be prepared for a surge of patients.
• University Hospital was the largest site in the world for Phase 2 of the Remdesivir clinical trial, and has also enrolled patients for Phase 3.
• Launched a Post COVID-19 Recovery Clinic to serve patients with physical rehabilitation and other ongoing health needs post-COVID.
The world has changed, but University Health’s commitment to your health and wellbeing has not. We will continue to innovate and work with our partners at UT Health San Antonio to ensure that our community has the best possible tools in the fight against COVID-19.